Just A Day on the Calendar

As I looked at my phone to see calendar reminders for the day, I also saw the reminders for tomorrow.  March 7 “meeting at 1pm and Elton John concert 8pm”.  I have known the date was coming.  I even thought I was prepared.  When I bought the Elton John tickets I knew the concert was March 7.  I was so excited to be taking my 14-year-old grandson to hear one of the legends of music. Jan loved music as much as I did.  What a great way to feel close to her again.

I did so well last year; some tears, some remembering, some joy in celebrating her life.  I was so proud of my new, ever so grown up, spiritual way of looking at death and loss.  I was doing so well with everything in life that I no longer needed to see my therapist.  We did good work together.  After Jan F. died I knew (because everyone told me)  I needed help.  It was one more time when God directed my steps and lead me to Rhonda.  During my two years with her  my Mother died, my “other” Mother died, I had a major change in my position at work, health issues, and more.

But as I saw the date on my calendar this morning everything changed.  I felt such anger.  “Come on–it is only a date on the calendar.  Nothing has changed”, I told my self.  I took a deep breath and finished getting dressed.  I yelled at the dog for getting under foot.  I grabbed my briefcase and rushed out the door.

I turned up the music in the car to drown out my thoughts.  Someone pulled out in front of me.  I screamed, “What is wrong with you? Are you a friggin’ idiot?” Of course they couldn’t hear me..thank goodness.    The radio was still blaring and these words caught my ear:

Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops?
What if your healing comes through tears?
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?

What if my greatest disappointments, or the aching of this life;
Is a revealing of greater thirst that a world can’t satisfy?

And what if trials of this life, the rain, the storms, the hardest nights;
Are Your mercies in disguise? (LYRICS BY LAURA STORY)

“Really? You want me to believe all the pain and heartache we experience is just so we can feel close to you, God? Is this suppose to make me feel all warm and fuzzy?  How about a miracle when Jan F. was waiting for the ambulance to arrive after her massive heart attack?  Much easier than parting the Red Sea, don’t you think?”

I walked into my office and shut my door.  I told the staff I needed to finish a report.  I sat there fighting the anger and tears.  I told God I was sorry for being so difficult.  I really needed some help because I have work to do.  I can’t hide in here all day.   Just something..anything..please.

A Facebook notification popped up. As I opened Facebook, a previous post caught my eye.  My friend’s mother in law passed away on Monday.  She shared a conversation she had with her 3-year-old Lydia.  I hope she doesn’t mind that I share this with you here.

“Gary and his Dad are still at the hospital making sure Gary’s Mum is comfortable. I came home to put Lydia to bed. I talked to Lydia earlier today about what was happening to Grandma. So when we got home, I asked Lydia if she knew what was happening to Grandma and she said she was dying. Then we talked about different sicknesses. Then Lydia said that Grandma would be dancing and happy. I asked her how she knew that and Lydia said, because she likes to dance! Do you think kids have special conversations with the dying and dead?! It was probably a flukey 3-year old thing to say, but you never know!”

I quietly slipped outside and took a short walk around downtown Summerville. Gentle tears came as I walked…and then a smile. Jan loved music so much.  I felt her presence. I felt her singing and dancing.  I heard her say, “It’s only a day the calendar.”

9 responses

  1. I think that’s exactly what she would say but she would also be grateful that she is remembered for loving and song. Be well, friend, and cherish your days and memories. I miss her too.


    1. Donna..I know you do. When I think of Jan you are never far from my thoughts as well. And I know you have a special day coming as well. Happy Anniversary. Love you.


  2. What a great post, Cathy. Sometimes it’s much easier to embrace anger and hurt than hope and strength. Thanks for the reminder, and for being such a lovely person. ((Hugs))


  3. Wow Cathy, we do seem to have some kind of synergy going on here. I just wrote about your birthdate and March 7th is the day after my birthday. I literally just came in from singing and dancing in the rain to sit down and read your blog 🙂 I kind of have to wonder who was out there dancing with me? Isn’t it amazing how God can speak to you through a seemingly random song or the simple honesty of children is just the thing we need to hear to put us in a new perspective. I love that! I do so admire your honesty. Was that in downtown Summerville in S.C?


    1. Yes it was downtown Summerville SC 🙂 Interesting thing about the little girl that said talked about her grandmother dancing. Her mother is Buddest and from England. She is Chinese. She met a South Carolina boy and married him and moved here. Lydia the little girl has never been in church or had any formal God training but yet she knew something about the spiritual that many of us who spent years in church don’t get. 🙂


  4. […] died suddenly in March, 2008 everything changed.  I shared the story in several blogs including this one.   I kept everyone at a distance and was determined never to let anyone get close […]


  5. […] She was my therapist and later became my best friend.  I talk about her in several blogs including this one.    After her sudden death, I decided to return to therapy.   A friend’s recommendation led me […]


  6. Reblogged this on Cathy's Voice Now and commented:

    March 7 Just a day on the calendar, but one that always stands out.

    “I do not understand the mystery of grace — only that it meets us where we are and does not leave us where it found us.” Anne Lamott


  7. Thank you for the comfort. It really doesn’t get any easier with time. Glad that someone else also knew and loved her.


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